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‘Escape Artist’ Review: Great Expectations

‘Escape Artist’ Review: Great Expectations

In “Escape Artist,” Joseph McAleer’s premise is that his uneminent subject was in fact a remarkable fellow who deserves to be much better known. He ca

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In “Escape Artist,” Joseph McAleer’s premise is that his uneminent subject was in fact a remarkable fellow who deserves to be much better known. He calls Harry Perry Robinson (1859-1930) “a latter-day Tocqueville” whose “march through history, a near-epic story,” exemplified “an exciting personal story worthy of Horatio Alger.”

Whether readers of this book will enjoy it depends, I suspect, on whether they agree with Mr. McAleer’s thesis. Robinson’s father was a Church of England clergyman who served in India and eventually…

This post first appeared on wsj.com

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